Six Hard Drive Setup

Discussion in 'Acronis Disk Director Suite' started by Domonus, Feb 29, 2008.

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  1. Domonus

    Domonus Registered Member

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    Well i want to create my dream booting system, and i might aswell find out if Acronis can do it for me.

    Currently i use
    -three Raptors in Raid for XP currently (backed up daily)
    -One Raptor for Vista64
    -Storage Drive
    -Misc Drive

    What i want todo is have Acronis OS Selector run an boot entirely off partition from the "Misc Drive". So if i were to unplug every drive except the "Misc" it would boot in OSS, and show that for some reason my operating system list is gone.

    Every time i install OSS to the Active partition *Boot on "Misc", selecting that drive during the install. I reboot and try booting from the "Misc" drive. It can't find ntldr, funny why is it looking for that shouldn't it boot into the manager? I plug the "three raptors" back in and it boots into OSS on that drive. Now some files get put on the "Misc" but not everything. Why is it putting the boot sector on that hard-drive when i tell it not to.

    Mind this wouldn't bug the normal user. However i want to be able to throw in any hard drive and not worry about having an OS drive plugged in, or being used to boot from. Something that i would like todo in the future would be to transfer the Vista OS to the Raid Array, without worrying that OSS will be affected.

    I hope this is making sense. Maybe its just not possible :\ doubt it

    Breakdown:

    1.) Raid (OS Highspeed Drives)
    2.) Secondary OS Drive
    3.) Misc drive (2 partitions *Boot and *Backups)
    4.) Storage

    The goal is to transfer images seamlessly between one and two, without mucking about in Boot Sector hell. Vista Boot Loader is completely on the vista drive, and boot.ini for XP on another independent of eachother. Ok i better stop typing im getting way to redundant.

    Thanks!

    :)
     
  2. Domonus

    Domonus Registered Member

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    No advice to accomplishing this. Guess ill try to return the software.

    :\
     
  3. Domonus

    Domonus Registered Member

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    Well i found out i could install cleanly to a partition from the boot CD, seems to have answered my question. However now i have to figure out why it won't recognize Vista 64 :\
     
  4. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    What you are trying to do might be possible. However, without testing it, you won't know. OSS can be problematic in some setups and this won't be normal. Also, Vista seems to have a problem with the Disk Order in some setups. It may not boot properly if changed.

    If you try this, I would recommend you have a current backup image of each OS drive before you begin. I assume you already have your Storage and Misc. drives backed up how you want.

    In your current setup, it sounds like you are selecting which OS to boot by selecting either the RAID or the Vista64 drive at boot time (either in the BIOS or with a "Boot Select" key).

    OSS can be installed to a specific partition. However, when you install it, you need to make sure the destination drive is the booting drive in the computer's BIOS. In your case, you should make the Misc. drive the boot drive and then install OSS. This will allow OSS to take over the MBR on the Misc. drive.

    The menu entries for the missing drives would still be in the list. If I remember correctly, OSS puts a little red circle with an 'X' on them to mark them as unavailable.

    I would guess that the Misc. drive was not set as the boot drive in the computer's BIOS when you installed OSS. This would have resulted in the OSS MBR being written to the RAID or the Vista drive (whichever was currently set as the boot drive) even though the OSS program is being installed to a partition on the Misc. drive. The MBR on the Misc. drive is probably an XP default and since it can't find NTLDR on the Active partition, it throws an error.

    This is where you will need to test out the Disk Order feature. Most Windows installations expect to be on the booting drive. Since you are currently using the BIOS to switch which OS boots, that's how your systems are setup.

    OSS will not care if you move Vista to the RAID. However, OSS may or may not correctly detect the move and Vista may need to be repaired or fixed after this type of move. This type of change falls into a completely different category than normal OS switching using a boot manager.

    Keep in mind that OSS (or most other boot managers) do not expect the drives and installed operating systems to be in a constant state of flux. They expect them to remain in a relatively fixed state.
     
  5. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    OSS has a problem detecting Vista in some cases. You shoud be able to manually add Vista to the OSS menu by following the steps in this thread: Vista disappeared in dual boot. Post #14 outlines the procedure.
     
  6. Domonus

    Domonus Registered Member

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    Ok great firstly some good information. Thanks!

    Well all is well this minute. Ive got OSS booting up on a primary active partition on my backup hard drive. Vista on another and XP on Raid. Good thing is XP isn't using the new vista bootmgr either.

    Getting Vista working wasn't tricky at all ;) Ive got a pretty good understanding of the boot.ini and disks/partitions. So i created the manual entry and all is good.

    However im rather disappointed in OSS, my switch to this was more for the automatic recognition of operating systems on multiple drive. So if all of a sudden Disk 1 became XP or Vista or FC, OSS would be smart enough to pick up on the change and flip the dips itself. However they do make it rather easy with that OSS file. So i make Vista the primary (raid) and flip the corresponding entries. Seems basic enough....

    My shiny new DD Suite disk should be 2008 and do it all for me. I understand my situation is unique, but in theory its rather simplistic. And i have the ballz to suggest that this be seriously looked into, to make it the killer app. Or maybe even manageable profiles?

    ;-Thanks again!

    System Specs: http://forums.slizone.com/index.php?showtopic=15001
    a little outdated since the new Raptors. I hope all goes well with OSS and a 3ware Raid card in a couple months
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2008
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